In addition to tons of great bands and albums coming out in the 80’s, there were also a lot of various magazines and smaller “fanzines” that were dedicated to all things Metal. This was not just an American trend either as Heavy Metal Music (and it’s dozens of sub-genres) was truly a world-wide phenomenon.
As a matter of fact, a lot of the bands that were able to come out of the “underground” and move on to bigger and better things cite the smaller fanzines and worldwide metal network as a key ingredient to their initial success. This was a hands-on, grass-roots type of community too. Everybody pitched in and shared their contacts, traded ads (for their up coming issue of their respected ‘zine) and also gladly distributed band and concert flyers. I think I will also start a band/show flyer gallery. I have hundreds of these myself. I think it’s interesting to see which band played where and with whom at the time! And all the flyer artwork was cool too come to think of it!
This close-knit network was very loyal to their favorite bands too. As a matter of fact, I still listen and support these bands (and this heavy form of music more than 20 years later) and I have run into hundreds of other die-hard “metalheads” from the 80’s scene that still listen to and buy new material as well. And best of all is the fact that in the last few years there seems to have been a huge metal resurgence and a lot of the originators returned to tour and or release new material. And of course there are many bands such as EXODUS, KING DIAMOND, OVERKILL, TESTAMENT, SLAYER, MEGADETH and lots of others that never even quit in the first place! Man, you have to respect that too. Obviously sometimes there were various band member changes, record label changes and or some time in-between releases.
I think we might have all of Europe to thank for that in recent times as their great fans are rabid Metalheads and have supported these bands through thick and thin and because of this, were able to get them to re-form, rehearse a bit and bring it back to the stage. And thank god we had lots of killer magazines and fanzines that were regularly covering and documenting this great music.